Twenty teachers selected from across the state of Alabama are gathering this week atop Alabama’s highest mountain to explore the natural wonder of Alabama's Cheaha State Park and JSU's Mountain Center near Heflin.
The program, which began July 8 and concludes today, is called Arts and the Environment: Making Connections Teacher Workshop. It is co-sponsored by JSU Field Schools and Legacy: Partners in Environmental Education.
Workshop leaders Renee Morrison of the JSU Field Schools and Toni Bruner of Legacy developed the unique program, which combines art and nature. Allison McElroy of the JSU Art department will be the group's "artist in residence" and Sherry Kughn, a freelance Writer and local school teacher, will be their "writer in residence." The teachers will create their own nature journals, learn creative writing techniques, collect plants on a Wild Thyme Tea hike led by Alabama State Park Naturalist Brittney Hughes and learn about the state's geology from JSU professor Kelly Gregg. Other activities include paddling the tranquil Tallapoosa River with JSU Technology professor Teje Sult and learning hands-on folk art such as blacksmithing/forging recycled metals, "found and natural art" techniques, watercolor, fairy houses, storytelling, creative drama and more. At the end of the workshop, teachers will learn Japanese book-binding techniques to finish their journals and complete their journey of "making connections."
For more information, please contact Renee Morrison, assistant director, JSU Field Schools.